Catherine Mellis
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Our realities are not static things, they are coloured by shifting memories of the past and moulded around desires we have for our future that are often based on imperfect notions of who we are and what reality is and can be.

When I dive it feels like I find a straight path through all of these things to a part of me that is at peace with my reality. I seem largely unable to connect with this place normally. When I look around me I find artifacts of my past overlay my present. These totems, stamped in time, I carry with me, they consist of images of hope and allow me to wonder and dream of an expansive future. The underwater landscape can be an illuminating place, with layers of humanity interlaced with wilderness. Your view is constrained, sounds move right through you, it is another world where your focus is heightened. It makes me feel alive, in a good way. Plus I can't go that often which helps to preserve its position in my esteem no doubt.

2020

This year I have produced many waterscapes with florescent inks. These screenprints are near impossible to photograph so are best seen in the flesh. They are screen printed monoprints, so each one is an unrepeated unique piece. I start with an open screen and then effectively use the ink in a more painterly way. This can produce unpredictable resuts with a high failure rate. I started with the intention of trying to portray the underwater abovewater divide and this stayed my main focus, however I found I could produce waterscapes from above perspective with nice atmospheric results too.

July Open Studios

printmaker
Colourful abstract and semi-abstract monoprint screenprints, largely driven by a desire to recreate wonderful experiences had in and under water.
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I'm drawn inescapably to water and light. My work is a constant quest to try capture the way I feel when in the presence of both. I love to scuba dive and feel enchanted by the experience of being in the blue. Warm water and the array of colours in tropical oceans are what I want to be reminded of. My work become postcards of my memories of these dives, but not necessarily of the things I see directly but of the feelings and dreams they spur in me. 

I did my degree in Fine Art at Southampton Institute, my foundation at The University of Hertfordshire and was an associate at Anglia Polytechnic where I focused on printmaking. I spent my teens in Saudi Arabia where I learnt how to scuba dive in the Persian Gulf and have gone to continue to dive ever since. For me there is a strong link between art and the natural world, both stimulate my senses in a way that I would like to repeat.